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Home / case studies / Case study: How ASUS promotes sustainability across its supply chain

Case study: How ASUS promotes sustainability across its supply chain

ASUS is a leading innovator in mobile and computing solutions headquartered in Taipei, Taiwan, whose customer base includes consumers, businesses, schools and government agencies. As a global leader in information products, ASUS cooperated with 365 suppliers in 2018 and seeks to become reciprocal partners with its value chain, so as to achieve sustainable development goals.

This case study is based on the 2018 Corporate Social Responsibility Report by ASUS published on the Global Reporting Initiative Sustainability Disclosure Database that can be found at this link. Through all case studies we aim to demonstrate what CSR/ ESG/ sustainability reporting done responsibly means. Essentially, it means: a) identifying a company’s most important impacts on the environment, economy and society, and b) measuring, managing and changing.

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ASUS encourages all its suppliers to shoulder corporate social responsibility with a comprehensive management framework  Tweet This!, so as to build a sustainable supply chain together. In order to promote sustainability across its supply chain ASUS took action to:
  • require suppliers to sign a Compliance Declaration
  • promote engagement and communication
  • provide corrective action counselling
  • increase qualification requirements

What are the material issues the company has identified?

In its 2018 Corporate Social Responsibility Report ASUS identified a range of material issues, such as customer satisfaction, water resource management, product stewardship, climate action, talent development, welfare and performance. Among these, promoting sustainability across its supply chain stands out as a key material issue for ASUS.

Stakeholder engagement in accordance with the GRI Standards              

The Global Reporting Initiative (GRI) defines the Principle of Stakeholder Inclusiveness when identifying material issues (or a company’s most important impacts) as follows:

“The reporting organization shall identify its stakeholders, and explain how it has responded to their reasonable expectations and interests.”

Stakeholders must be consulted in the process of identifying a company’s most important impacts and their reasonable expectations and interests must be taken into account. This is an important cornerstone for CSR / sustainability reporting done responsibly.

Key stakeholder groups ASUS engages with:

To identify and prioritise material topics ASUS engaged with its stakeholders through the following channels: 

Stakeholder Group                Method of engagement
Employee ·      Enterprise Information Portal

·      E-paper/email

·      Employee opinion box

·      Welfare Satisfaction Online survey

Shareholder/ Investor

 

 

·      Shareholders meeting

·      Investor website/email

·      Market Observation Post System

·      Quarterly Report/Annual Report

Suppliers/ Outsourcer

 

·      Global Supply Chain Management (SCM) Portal

·      Supply Relationship Management (SRM) Portal

·      Annual Workshop

·      Supplier Assessment/Onsite Audit Supplier

·      Questionnaires

Customer

 

·      Product/Technical Support Website

·      Customer Satisfactory Survey

·      Social Networking

·      Consumer activities

·      ASUS CSR Website/Email

·      Stakeholders’ Survey

Media ·      Press Conference

·      Press Release

Community ·      Join Local Activities

·      Volunteering Activities

·      ASUS CSR Website/Email

·      Stakeholders’ Survey

Government/Non-Profit Organisation/Non-Governmental Organisation/Academic ·      Investor Relation Website/Email

·      ASUS CSR Website/Email

·      Stakeholders’ Survey

What actions were taken by ASUS to promote sustainability across its supply chain?

In its 2018 Corporate Social Responsibility Report ASUS reports that it took the following actions for promoting sustainability across its supply chain:

  • Requiring suppliers to sign a Compliance Declaration
  • ASUS requires all suppliers to sign the ASUS Code of Conduct Compliance Declaration, to communicate the requirements of integrity governance and to review the extent to which it is implemented by suppliers, through audits. In the assistance and counselling plan to strengthen the improvement of findings, ASUS discusses the issue of integrity governance and shares excellent management cases in the industry.
  • Promoting engagement and communication
  • To enhance suppliers’ awareness of sustainability issues and their ability to respond to risks, ASUS organises supply chain conferences and education and training for individual suppliers on a regular basis, to convey its management requirements in the interests of further deepening the partnership with the supply chain. In, 2018, supply chain conferences were held in Taipei, Shenzhen, Suzhou, and Chongqing, and all ASUS’s qualified suppliers and OEMs (original equipment manufacturers) were invited. With “ASUS 2020 Sustainability Goals” as the theme of year 2018, ASUS’ sustainable management strategies were conveyed, including four key issues, namely corporate sustainability, green products, supply chain management, and daily management FAQs (frequently asked questions). Short-, mid-, and long-term goals were announced, and suppliers were invited to achieve these goals with ASUS.
  • Providing corrective action counselling
  • To assist suppliers in improving the findings identified through audits, ASUS holds a quarterly counselling meeting and requires all suppliers to send representatives to participate. At the meetings, impartial third-party RBA (ResponsibleBusiness Alliance) qualified auditors are invited to analyse the reasons for the findings and share excellent cases in the industry to enhance suppliers’ management awareness and ability to improve.
  • Increasing qualification requirements
  • Based on the analysis of the 2017 environmental profit and loss project, greenhouse gases and wastewater pollution were identified as the greatest environmental impact to ASUS’s supply chain operation. This result highlighted the importance of environmental management and, considering the popularity of incorporating supply chains into the environmental management system, ASUS increased the qualification requirements for qualified suppliers: starting in 2019, suppliers should have ISO 14001 Environmental Management System certification, in addition to ISO 9001 Quality System certification.

Which GRI Standards and corresponding Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) have been addressed?

The GRI Standards addressed in this case are:

1) Disclosure 308-1 New suppliers that were screened using environmental criteria

2) Disclosure 414-1 New suppliers that were screened using social criteria

 

Disclosure 308-1 New suppliers that were screened using environmental criteria does not correspond to any SDG.

Disclosure 414-1 New suppliers that were screened using social criteria corresponds to:

  • Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) 5: Achieve gender equality and empower all women and girls
  • Business theme: Workplace violence and harassment
  • Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) 8: Promote sustained, inclusive and sustainable economic growth, full and productive employment and decent work for all
  • Business theme: Labor practices in the supply chain
  • Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) 16: Promote peaceful and inclusive societies for sustainable development, provide access to justice for all and build effective, accountable and inclusive institutions at all levels
  • Business theme: Workplace violence and harassment

 

80% of the world’s 250 largest companies report in accordance with the GRI Standards

SustainCase was primarily created to demonstrate, through case studies, the importance of dealing with a company’s most important impacts in a structured way, with use of the GRI Standards. To show how today’s best-run companies are achieving economic, social and environmental success – and how you can too.

Research by well-recognised institutions is clearly proving that responsible companies can look to the future with optimism.



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References:

1) This case study is based on published information by ASUS, located at the link below. For the sake of readability, we did not use brackets or ellipses. However, we made sure that the extra or missing words did not change the report’s meaning. If you would like to quote these written sources from the original, please revert to the original on the Global Reporting Initiative’s Sustainability Disclosure Database at the link:

http://database.globalreporting.org/

2) https://www.globalreporting.org/standards/gri-standards-download-center/

Note to ASUS: With each case study we send out an email requesting a comment on this case study. If you have not received such an email please contact us.

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